Renewables

Greece’s PPC sets its sights on Italy, Croatia in tandem with Mytilineos

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Photo: Pvproductions on Freepik

Published

April 16, 2024

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April 16, 2024

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Five years after the start of its restructuring, Public Power Corp. – PPC is paying out the first dividend in a decade and widening the scope of its regional expansion. The Greek government-controlled utility agreed to acquire a solar power portfolio of almost 2 GW from Mytilineos Energy and Metals upon completion. The projects are in Italy, Romania, Bulgaria and Croatia.

PPC Group’s long-planned regional expansion is gradually taking shape. It signed a cooperation framework agreement with Mytilineos Energy and Metals on a portfolio of solar power projects of almost 2 GW. The companies value the deal at up to EUR 2 billion and expect it to be implemented over the next three years.

The agreement refers to 90 solar projects in Italy (503 MW), Romania (516 MW), Bulgaria (500 MW) and Croatia (445 MW), at various stages of development. They are owned by Mytilineos, which will develop them and install the facilities, according to the announcement. PPC agreed to acquire the photovoltaic plants upon connection to the grid.

Regional expansion began with Romania

PPC, known also for its Greek acronym DEI, bought Enel’s operations in Romania last year and went from there. In the meantime it revealed plans to enter Bulgaria, but failed to establish a strategic partnership for the construction and operation of the Čebren pumped storage hydropower plant in North Macedonia.

The group aims to grow its renewable energy capacity to 8.9 GW by 2026.

For Mytilineos, the deal is part of its M Renewables’ growth strategy including the recent entry into the Canadian market with projects of an overall 1.5 GW. The Greek company is active in development, engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) and operation and maintenance (O&M). Its portfolio now amounts to 10.5 GW. Italy accounts for 2.5 GW.

PPC has 2.8 GW under construction or ready to build

PPC’s recurring EBITDA – earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization – a measure of profitability, surged 35% last year to EUR 1.3 billion. The utility’s operating renewables capacity climbed to 4.6 GW from 3.5 GW, of which the Romanian transaction added 0.6 GW.

It has 2.8 GW under construction or in a ready-to-build phase, in an 18 GW project portfolio. PPC’s 2026 target includes 1.3 GW in Romania.

The management said it would propose a dividend, the first one in a decade, of 25 eurocents per share. On April 15, PPC closed at EUR 11.49 per share in Athens – it grew 770% in five years and 44% in the past year. The company adopted a restructuring plan in 2019, when it was in bad shape, and started a decarbonization push.

Presenting its financial results for 2023, PPC said it has put into operation the Iliako Velos 1 photovoltaic plant of 200 MW. It is located in Ptolemaida. Another solar park with two units is under construction in the same area in Western Macedonia province. They have 550 MW and 171 MW.

In partnership with RWE from Germany, PPC is building three clusters in Amyntaio in Western Macedonia: 210 MW, 280 MW and 450 MW. Last year it also launched production at the Arkadikos Ilios 1-2 PV facility in Megalopolis in the Peloponnese peninsula, Greece’s other coal mining and thermal power plant hub. The capacity is 50 MW.

The company’s subsidiary PPC Renewables or DEIAN is tasked with the green transformation.

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